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Fake spam freelancers everywhere

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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
11 of 58

re: "It is otherwise an impossibility."

 

I would classify it as a genuine and sincere goal. Or at least a wish. It is a THEORETICAL possibility.

 

And only a PRACTICAL impossibility.

 

But for what it's worth... Even if they don't reach their goal... Every time they video interview a freelancer and discover a fraudster and shut down an account... It makes the platform more honest, more accountable and better.

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Community Guru
Virginia F Member Since: Feb 15, 2016
12 of 58

@Preston H wrote:

re: "It is otherwise an impossibility."

 

I would classify it as a genuine and sincere goal. Or at least a wish. It is a THEORETICAL possibility.

 

And only a PRACTICAL impossibility.

 

But for what it's worth... Even if they don't reach their goal... Every time they video interview a freelancer and discover a fraudster and shut down an account... It makes the platform more honest, more accountable and better.


 Yes ... there is that.

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Active Member
Eoghan O Member Since: May 17, 2018
13 of 58

I think the simplest way to stop a lot of this spam programmatically, without even manual verification, would be a simple 1 second recorded video of the user that they have to record when signing up. This could be attached to their profile, be public and clients could check it to see if the person matches the profile pic etc. 

 

Upwork already has all the tools to do this and the brevity of the clip means it shouldn't be a problem for freelancers to agree to. Having it as a video means it is nearly impossible to defraud the process.

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Community Guru
Rene K Member Since: Jul 10, 2014
14 of 58

Upwork allows the change of ownership of accounts. A translator's account can go from a German female to a Nigerian male (a true and recent example), so clients should only trust their own verification processes and leave Upwork outside of the loop. Upwork is not the solution to a problem they are a part of.

 

A video call is an excellent way to do this, it allows you to be sure that the person is who they claim they are and where they claim they are.

 

Don't forget one important thing: people who lie about their location or identity are almost always scammers seeking to milk a client or two before getting caught.

 

 

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless
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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
15 of 58

re: "Upwork allows the change of ownership of accounts."

 

I'm not sure I would say "Upwork allows" this.

 

Upwork has rules against this. But there is no technically feasible way for Upwork to prevent dishonest freelancers from doing this.

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
16 of 58

@Rene K wrote:

Upwork allows the change of ownership of accounts. A translator's account can go from a German female to a Nigerian male (a true and recent example),


 Actually, in fairness they did eventually remove him / her / it. The profile is gone.

Upwork do not "allow" the change of ownership of a freelancer account. It is sometimes just a little difficult to get it through to them why something is clearly a suspicious profile.

 

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Community Guru
Cheryl K Member Since: Jul 16, 2015
17 of 58

I'm not in the category that you needed to hire. But I am a writer with a pretty good track record on Upwork.

If you asked me for a video Skype interview you would creep me out and I honestly wouldn't apply for your job. Even if I was fully qualified, even if you were willing to pay my rates, and even if the job was related to one of my personal passions.

Nope, wouldn't do it.

See from the freelancer side, I feel that my appearance has nothing to do with my ability to write or craft the content you need to meet your goals.

Sure, I'd talk on the phone - and I do frequently speak with clients by phone - but I'm not fixing my hair and putting on my makeup unless I am leaving the house. Sorry.

Just thought you might want to see that requiring a video call might turn off more than just scammers.

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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
18 of 58

Your observations about your perspective as a freelancer are a valuable contribution to this conversation.

 

Although... nobody conversing with you via email or messaging would doubt your identity or abilities as a writer.

 

So in that regard, this situation doesn't apply directly to you. The original poster certainly encountered many freelancers whose identities are indeed in doubt.

 

He was generous to suppose that most of the fraudulent freelancers may be good coders. I don't believe that is generally true. I think that the freelancers who fake their identities also fake their abilities. Their work will consist primarily of stuff they searched for and downloaded off the internet. It will be material they have little real understanding of or control of, and it will not really meet the client's needs.

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Community Guru
Pandora H Member Since: May 11, 2010
19 of 58

@Cheryl K wrote:

but I'm not fixing my hair and putting on my makeup unless I am leaving the house. Sorry.

Just thought you might want to see that requiring a video call might turn off more than just scammers.


 Cheryl, I don't mean to diminish your own concerns about Skype vidoe chats. Some people don't like to do video, and that's ok. So long as your clients know that, it should not matter.

 

 

 

I don't mind doing video, but am well aware that freaks a lot of people out. I guess my 15 years doing social video teleconfrancing has made me feel somewhat comfortable "behind the camera". But, to each his own.

 

I'd only have an issue if someone insisted, and then did something slimy during the interview. Even if the pay and job were awesome, I'd still walk away. I don't think the OP is slimy, and if he wants to confirm a freelancer that way, no big. 

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Upwork Staff
Jeff C Upwork Staff Member Since: May 1, 2015
20 of 58

This is a great (and mildly humorous) thread. Upwork offers a service to introduce freelancers to clients, and vice versa. As with any remote, or even in-person interaction, we all should spend the time to build trust to ensure we have a good outcome.

 

For some jobs, knowing exactly who is working on your job may be less critical. If you are hiring someone to build your IT infrastructure, you’re probably going to want to do extensive screening. In either case, if you want to increase the chance of success, a video interview is always a good idea. And it's probably a good idea to video chat with the freelancer periodically throughout the contract.

 

Today, most freelancers working in technology jobs have verified their profile picture via webcam. As mentioned earlier, “identity” means many things, and it’s important that all clients verify their freelancers to levels they feel confident that the freelancer can do the job.

 

We are increasing our investment into identity in 2018 to provide more behind the scenes and customer facing services to keep the site safe and increase job success. I’ll update the community as more progress is made.

 

And no, this is not the “Entry Level” position we are hiring for - though Rene, you did give me a laugh with this connection.



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